The Mercedes driver finished second in Sunday’s race, finishing seventh after a DRS failure on the final lap of Q3 killed his chances of matching team-mate George Russell’s pole time.

Russell finished third, p Max Verstappen won despite starting 10th.

But seven-time F1 world champion Hamilton says that while cooler conditions on Sunday helped the team claim their second consecutive double podium, he could have taken the win but for his struggles on Saturday.

Speaking after the race, he said: “I definitely think because it was a bit steeper it worked a bit better for us. I can’t say exactly why, but I’m grateful for it.

“I was hoping it would rain at the end so I could challenge Max, but we ran out of laps.

“So slightly better qualifying, if the DRS had been OK yesterday we would have been in contention for the win.

“But either way, two seconds in a row, I’m very, very happy. So a big thank you to the fans for all the amazing support.”

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes W13

Photo: Zak Mauger / Images of motor sports

Hamilton is currently sixth in the drivers’ standings, just 10 points behind Carlos Sainzand Mercedes is only 30 points behind Ferrari.

He says he doesn’t know where the team’s speed came from on Sunday, but added: “I definitely struggled at the start of the race and wasn’t sure if I could catch the guys.

“But little by little I felt a bit more comfortable with the balance, had a really good start as well.

“I really want to thank my team who kept pushing, never giving up in this tough year we’ve had so far.

“For us to be on the podium, both cars have been on the podium twice, it’s very special for us. And George was really unlucky today. The other guys still have a slight advantage.

“But we are definitely closing the gap. And it’s just an amazing way to go into the break knowing that we have that efficiency.

“Hopefully we’ll bring more in the second half of the season and start to challenge the guys up front.”

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